Aussies – Work Hard, Play Hard
I must say that I‘ve seldom met any Aussies working in IT that I‘ve disliked.
In fact I can‘t remember any.
They seem to work pretty hard.
I remember one old boss of mine who said that the only people that he wouldn‘t employ were ex-teachers.
He said that they never worked hard.
Employs Aussies and Kiwis
I only ever worked with one ex-teacher and this was certainly true of him.
He used to talk and talk all day, especially to the girls about absolutely nothing.
We use to call him ‘Another scone, vicar?’
The one group of people who my old boss at Honda said he always employed were Australians and Kiwis, as he felt that they were always hard, conscientious workers.
One Aussie Worked for me
The one Aussie that I remember that actually worked for me was at a company in Putney.
I liked him fine, but he upset quite a few others, including my permie boss.
They actually fired him (which he liked), before I got in one morning from a dental appointment.
IT Contract in Paris
He had got a contract in Paris which he wanted to take, but which needed him to be there in two weeks time.
Unfortunately for him he was on a month‘s notice, which my boss pointed out to him when he tried to resign.
He told my boss ‘Look mate, there‘s no way that you can keep me here if I don‘t want to stay. If you want, I‘ll stand up on this desk and piss in your face and you‘ll have to let me go then’.
It would have been a slightly unusual tactic, especially in Putney, but it worked and they sent him out of the building immediately.
Not in Sydney
I do remember that I told him that I would understand if he came in late one morning, if he wanted to watch the big match from Australia.
‘What big match?’ he asked.
It was the Australia v Scotland play-off qualifier for the football World Cup.
‘Where is it being played’ he asked. I told him that it was in Melbourne. ‘As we say in Sydney’ he said, ‘if it happens in Melbourne it can‘t be important’.
Actually from memory now, it was that day he was sacked, when I was late in because of the football rather than from a dental appointment (as a matter of interest, the Scots pissed on the Aussies while he was threatening it to a poor Englishman of Indian origin).
Barbies and Beer
I hung around with several Aussies socially.
They liked to work hard and play hard and liked to get away somewhere (usually en masse) for the weekend, or to have a barbecue somewhere with a few drinks thrown in.
I remember at one place I worked where I introduced two Aussies to our cricket team.
They were both quite good, one as a batsman and one as a bowler.
I remember one time when the batsman was umpiring and the bowler was batting.
He eventually made 76 in a pretty quick fire innings.
There was a major shout for him to be out when he was in his thirties, which wasn‘t given out by our umpire.
When asked by the other team in the bar afterwards why he wasn‘t plum out, our batsman umpire replied of his Aussie friend ‘Well, he seemed to be going pretty well, so I just let him go’ and gave a loud guffaw.
Taken Aback by Denis Herbert
The other team of village cricketers seemed a little taken aback by this explanation as this wasn‘t the normal type of explanation given by umpires in the villages of Surrey, Sussex and Kent where we normally played.
I do remember that the last I saw of this Aussie was his bare backside hanging out of a car in rural England as he departed village cricket for the final time.
His name was Denis Herbert if there are any Aussie readers of this site.
All in all the Aussies I worked with were a good bunch.
I worked with a number of Kiwis too, which often involved weekends away in the backs of vans visiting medieval castles in Wales and rugby matches at Cardiff and Murrayfield, but I‘ll leave that for another article.
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